Sunday, 14 October 2018

Jan Sadeler I’s engraving “The Seventh Day: God Blesses Adam, Eve, and the Animals”, c1585


Jan Sadeler I (aka Johannes Sadeler; Johann Sadeler) (1550–1600)

“The Seventh Day: God Blesses Adam, Eve, and the Animals” (TIB title), c1585, plate 7 from the series, “Creation of the World”, after a lost drawing by Maarten de Vos (aka Marten de Vos; Maerten de Vos) (1532–1603), published by Jan Sadeler I as an illustration to “Thesaurus sacrarum historiarum veteris testament …”, Antwerp (1585). Note that there is a copy of this print published by Claes Jan Visscher without Sadeler’s name and God the Father has been replaced by a Tetragrammaton.

Engraving on laid paper trimmed close to the platemark.
Size: (sheet) 19.4 x 25 cm; (image borderline) 18.3 x 24.9 cm.
Numbered on plate within the image borderline: (top centre edge) “VII”.
Inscribed on plate within the image borderline: (lower left) “Genes. Cap: 2”; (lower right) “D/ figuravit.”; (lower right corner) “Joă sadeler/ aut: et scalpt:/ exc.”
Lettered in two columns of two lines on plate below the image borderline: "Ornamenta novo, iam onstant omnia Mŭdo./ .../ …// …/ …/ Constituens, dextra, Sabbatha dia, sacrat."
State i (of i)

TIB 7001.016 (Isabelle de Ramaix 1999, “The Illustrated Bartsch”, vol. 70, Part 1 [Supplement], Abaris Books, p. 34); Le Blanc, no. 20; Wurzbach, no. 6; Hollstein 1980, vol. 21, no. 16; Hollstein 1995–96, vol. 44, no. 18; Edquist, p. 4, no. 6a.

The Rijksmuseum offers the following description of this print:
(transl.) “God the Father in the clouds. He blesses Adam, Eve and the animals in the Earthly Paradise. The print has a Latin caption.”

Condition: richly inked and well-printed (near faultless) impression in excellent condition (i.e. there are no tears, folds, holes, abrasions, significant stains or foxing). The sheet is trimmed close to the platemark.

I am selling this marvellous engraving—no doubt a lifetime impression based on the crisp quality of the lines showing no wear to the printing plate—portraying an earthly paradise filled “to the brim” with a plethora of animals for AU$330 (currently US$234.84/EUR203/GBP178.60 at the time of posting this print) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world (but not, of course, any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries).

If you are interested in purchasing this masterwork of engraving by one of the most famous of the Flemish old master printmakers, please contact me (oz_jim@printsandprinciples.com) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold


Like most early illustrations of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden before their fall from grace, this scene of earthly paradise shows the first couple with their modesty intact from the viewer’s gaze. Interestingly, the spiky thistle that shields Adam’s manhood hints at the sin of disobedience about to unravel as the verse in Genesis 3:18 advises that the cursed ground “… will produce thorns and thistles”.

What I find interesting about this portrayal of paradise is how the viewer is made to feel at ease. Note for instance that the immediate foreground is bathed in an inviting warm light and that the viewpoint is elevated above any potential trouble on earth.







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